Are the Montreal Canadiens getting haunted by the ghosts of 2018?

The Montreal Canadiens have another injury on their hands with Brendan Gallagher, and it is starting to seem eerily familiar to how things were two seasons go.

The Montreal Canadiens have already been without Jonathan Drouin and Paul Byron dating back to November. They also had some man-games lost from Joel Armia and Victor Mete, but both are thankfully back in the lineup. However, the Brendan Gallagher injury adds on to a frustrating list the Habs are hoping doesn’t continue to grow.

It was a set of unlucky events happening in succession starting with a hit from Jordan Staal by the Hurricanes bench at the blueline. The hit sent Gallagher backwards off his skates into the path of Ben Chiarot. As Gallagher fell, his head made contact with Chiarot’s knee and eventually hard on the ice keeping him down for a period of time.

Gallager didn’t return to the game, and no one will know anything until the Montreal Canadiens release a report. It does look like a concussion that could snap his 282-game streak of consecutive play.

Does this feel familiar?

A season where the Habs were trying desperately to make the playoffs but kept getting hit by injuries. A year where Carey Price didn’t look like himself and wasn’t able to keep the team’s defensive issues at bay. A campaign where things started to get worse and worse as the games went on, leading to the Canadiens being out of a playoff spot and being in a good position to draft high.

That perfectly describes the 2017-18 season, where Shea Weber was injured in the first game despite not being shutdown until December, while Artturi Lehkonen, Max Pacioretty, Victor Mete, Phillip Danault, Andrew Shaw, and Carey Price missed time with their respective injuries. It was a perfect recipe for disaster and wound up with the Montreal Canadiens selecting Jesperi Kotkaniemi third overall.

This isn’t to guarantee the same thing is coming for the Habs at the moment, but it is gutting to have another injury happen to a key name on the roster. Drouin going down when he did was really unfortunate as it looked like the work he did over the summer with Dominique Ducharme paid off. Byron was having a rough start to the season but looked as if he was finding his stride before getting hurt while Gallagher is the heart of the team.

With a big name like Gallagher out of the lineup, the Montreal Canadiens as a unit needs to step up. The biggest difference between this season and two years ago is the team isn’t entirely out of it. That being said, there needs to be a great deal of urgency from that locker room to stop the bleeding before things get worse.

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The 2017-18 Habs were out of it early and had no means of coming back while there’s still a pass for the 2019-20 Habs. Hopefully, the injury bug takes a break for the time being and lets the Montreal Canadiens get back into the season.

 

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